When spring arrives, it seems like every couple of days I get a call from a potential seller. With the market trends we have seen over the last couple years it is more a buyer’s or investor’s market than ever before. Seller’s that succeed in selling are motivated, they are willing to listen to their agent and price their home correctly, and make their home standout above the competition.
Many of the sellers calling me at this time had their home on the market with other agents last year. They are frustrated that their home did not sell, that the listing agent never showed their home and they tend to blame the other agent. Most agents do not sell the property they list, they tend to bring the information to the real estate community and chances are another agent will bring the buyer.
While researching the past history of the home, the old listings and county records the handwriting is on the wall and very easy to see why their home did not sell. It all comes down to pricing.
This fact is driven home time and time again, but one such family that had came to me in 2008 had their home listed the previous year with a “local agent.” Even if we were in seller’s market the home had been listed about $75,000 higher than it would have sold for.
Now that another year has gone by we are looking at a price almost $100,000 lower than the price it was listed for. These sellers felt they had lost money since “the other agent” had over priced the home the sellers felt their home was worth the higher amount. This was never the case; the home actually has not lost any value, even with this buyer’s market we are currently in.
Will they list the home for the true value of the home and what it stands a chance for selling? I hope so, today after meeting with them I did not take the listing, I gave them the cold hard facts of what a 20 year old frame built home without a master and a small bedroom will truly sell. I explained my marketing plan, told them what buyers are looking for and what their competition has that they do not and what they have that the competition does not. I agreed to list the property for a price that shocked them but nothing more, asked them to take my listing presentation, marketing plan and paperwork home, to think about it and let me know tomorrow.
After I left them, I just wanted to drive to the other agent’s office and tell him exactly what I thought of what he had done to these wonderful people. The truly thought they had a chance of selling for a much higher price, they believed him, trusted him and were taken back with the truth.
Let’s fast forward to 2011 – the house never sold – the family lost their home, as the market continued to decline, jobs became more scarce and eventually they fell behind in their payments. Sadly they are now another victim of the market and the economy.
If you plan to sell this year, please take a good look at your competing properties what more do you have to offer, price your home accordingly. Many agents will price the home where you set the price, knowing full well you do not stand a chance of receiving an offer and even if you did that the home will never appraise which will kill the deal. Competition is steep, but home are selling, allow your agent to give you the cold hard facts and price the home below your closest competitor.